Using at midnight shouldn’t be one thing many bicycle vacationers contemplate. When evening falls, most touring cyclists are quick asleep, recuperating from an extended day of driving. However there are occasions when driving at midnight shouldn’t be solely potential, but additionally a good suggestion!
Immediately, I need to speak about three causes for touring at evening and observe that up with a brief and easy information to staying protected when driving at midnight.
It was on my second lengthy distance bicycle tour that I used to be first launched to the thought of bicycle touring at evening. I used to be in western Kansas, touring on the Transamerica bicycle route, and by no means in my life had I skilled a lot wind. Every day appeared like a wrestle towards an unimaginable breeze… and albeit, I didn’t suppose I might take far more of it.
However then, only a few days from the Kansas/Colorado border, I met a person pulling a trailer behind his bike. I had simply pulled right into a small metropolis park once I noticed this younger man packing up his issues. I assumed he could be spending the evening within the park with me as a result of dusk was simply an hour or two away, however I rapidly realized that this lone rider had spent the final week or two driving throughout Kansas in the course of the evening. He, like me, had rapidly grown uninterested in the pedaling within the wind, so he dedicated himself to driving at evening when the winds died down and the new Kansas solar disappeared behind the horizon.
I selected to not be a part of this younger rider on his nighttime traverse into Jap Colorado, however since my assembly with that nocturnal bike owner, I’ve executed my very own share of touring at midnight and realized that driving at evening shouldn’t be as dangerous as you may suppose. Not solely is driving at evening not that dangerous, at occasions it’s a terrific concept!
Wind – One of many principal causes for touring at evening is to beat the wind. As I’ve already shared, some cyclists will courageous the darkness of evening to flee from hour after hour pedaling the wind. Winds will usually occasions die down when evening falls and driving at midnight is an effective way to flee one of many touring cyclists’ largest enemies.
Solar / Warmth – One more reason you may contemplate driving at midnight is to remain out of the solar. Once I was touring by means of Kansas and Colorado in 2002, temperatures had been as excessive as 107 levels Fahrenheit. I used to be sizzling, sweaty and thirsty… and driving at evening would have been an effective way to beat the warmth and journey in relative consolation.
No Place To Sleep – Lastly, you may resolve to journey at evening if there’s merely no place to cease and relaxation. This occurred to me in 2006 once I was touring from Rawlins, Wyoming to Bear Lake, Idaho. It was getting darkish and I used to be on an extended stretch of freeway with nothing round. Not solely had been there no buildings or campsites of any form, there weren’t even any bushes that had been excessive sufficient to cover behind for an evening of stealth tenting. I did finally go a pair farmhouses and regarded knocking on the door and asking for a spot to sleep, however as an alternative, I merely saved driving. I rode my bike till about 3 ‘o clock within the morning earlier than I discovered a group of sagebrush that had been tall sufficient to cover behind and arrange my tent. At nighttime I had coated greater than 60 miles and totally loved myself alongside the way in which. Better of all, I didn’t see a single automotive your complete time and I loved feeling as if I had the entire world to myself!
Using at midnight actually has its benefits, nevertheless it additionally has its drawbacks as effectively. To begin with, your means to see goes to be diminished. Even with a very good set of lights, seeing will be tough. Passing vehicles will even have a tougher time seeing you whenever you resolve to experience at evening. And when touring at midnight, you want to concentrate on folks and/or animals that may very well be sharing the street with you. Private security is essential and you have to be ready for no matter may come your method.
If you happen to plan to journey at evening, you have to have a very good gentle to your bike. In my view a entrance gentle shouldn’t be 100% essential, however a rear gentle is a should! If you happen to don’t have a rear gentle to your bike, don’t even contemplate driving at midnight. Automobiles received’t be capable of see you and also you’re merely asking to be hit. Don’t do it!
When you’ve acquired your gentle(s), remember the fact that street circumstances should not at all times nice. When touring at evening you might be doubtless solely going to capable of see a couple of ft in entrance of you. Don’t journey too quick or get caught up within the second. Preserve your eyes on the street and be ready for the sudden pothole, street kill, or random particles that may enter your path.
Lastly, preserve security in thoughts always. If you happen to don’t really feel protected touring at midnight, don’t do it! If you’re scared, cease driving! Discover a place to camp and cool down for the evening. It is best to solely contemplate driving at midnight if you’re each ready and mentally capable of journey at evening. Once you journey at evening, remember the fact that an encounter with an animal is solely potential. A run-in with a bear, moose, wolf, or different massive or harmful animal is kind of doubtless, so you have to be ready for something! Perhaps be much more harmful than the animals you might encounter whereas driving at evening are the folks you may run into. Watch out for drunk drivers, hooligans, or different such individuals who intention to spoil your night. Once you journey at evening, you might be by yourself and there aren’t going to be many individuals round that can assist you out. It’s important to fend for your self and be ready for something. An encounter with a number of folks is a chance and you need to be ready to defend your self and/or make a stealthy exit.
Bicycle touring at evening shouldn’t be one thing most touring cyclists will ever must do. For essentially the most half, you need to keep on with touring in the course of the day and sleeping at evening. However remember the fact that driving at evening is a chance. If you happen to ought to encounter a scenario the place touring at evening is a good suggestion, preserve your security in thoughts. If potential, journey with one other particular person and be ready for something!
What do you concentrate on bicycle touring at evening? Is it a good suggestion? Or simply plain silly? Have you ever ever traveled at evening? In that case, why? And the way was the expertise?